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Local Students Learn Life-Saving Techniques

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The warning label on the safety gear worn by a firefighter is clear, “Firefighting is an ultra-hazardous, unavoidably dangerous activity. This (garment, hood, helmet) will not protect you from all burns, injuries, diseases, conditions or hazards.”

Facing a blazing fire, thick smoke, and debris, a properly trained firefighter will not hesitate to advance in order to stop fires or save human lives.

In addition to being correctly outfitted, firefighters also have to be physically fit, carry heavy gear, and above all – be trained at their trade.

Yet given all the dangers of the job that these public safety servants have to face, the fatality rate for firefighters is surprisingly low, and stands at around three fatalities per 100,000 fire incidents.

While the loss of any firefighter is a tragic event that impacts the entire community they serve, the nationwide low fatality rate is a testament to the professional nature of firefighters, their strict attitude to safety measures/procedures, and most of all, the intensive and extensive training they receive.

During their training to become a certified firefighter in the state of North Carolina, trainees learn about firefighting techniques and fire prevention, emergency medical procedures, tools such as axes, chainsaws, fire extinguishers, ladder skills, and basic hose and hydrant techniques – including live fire training.

Firefighters from three area volunteer fire departments recently completed one of the 21 required classes they will need to become certified by the North Carolina Fire and Rescue Commission. That class on fire scene ventilation was conducted at the Fire Training Facility on the Peachtree campus of Tri-County Community College (TCCC).

Ventilation is an important tactic at most firefighting operations. The TCCC course taught the firefighting students techniques for removing hot smoke and gases from inside a structure, either by natural convection or forced, and either through existing openings or new ones made by the firefighters on the scene. Proper ventilation can save lives and improper ventilation can cause backdraft or other hazards.

“The life-safety services provided by modern fire departments demand these skills and abilities, and our program is dedicated to providing the necessary training to augment the natural talents of our students,” said Bobby Barton, Coordinator for Fire and Rescue Training at Tri-County.

Tri-County Community College has been training area firefighters for nearly 50 years. If you are interested in becoming a firefighter or EMT, Tri-County Community College can help you achieve that goal.

You can get more information on reoccurring training opportunities and the firefighter certification training programs by contacting Bobby Barton on the TCCC Main Campus at (828) 835-4251.

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Posted in NC-Cherokee County, NC-Clay County, NC-Graham County, Regional News

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